From books we have the opportunity to learn and synthesize new knowledge.
In the book, “From Values to Action: The Four Principles of Values-Based Leadership,” by Harry Kraemer Jr., the reader can learn four simple values (think ethics) that can potentially elevate them to authentic and value-driven business leaders. Kraemer identifies four principles along with their precepts in how to behave as an ethical leader.
The first value and its precept is self-reflection, which is the ability to reflect and identify what you stand for, what your values are and what matters most to you. To make this real, possibly considering asking yourself these three questions:
1. What do you stand for?
2. What are your values?
3. What matters most to you?
Balance is the second value and is defined as the ability to see situations from multiple perspectives, including differing viewpoints to gain a holistic understanding. In today’s world, this value is all about emotional intelligence as defined by Kraemer’s precept. Emotional intelligence has been identified as being a key effective leadership skill.
How is your true self-confidence? Kraemer believes this to be the third key value and identifies it as the more mastery of certain skills, true self confidence enables you to accept yourself as you are, recognizing your strengths and your weaknesses and focusing on continuous improvement. With all the self-help books to seminars to online programs, measurable self-improvement seems to be more focusing on the quick fix instead of sustainable results.
After working with hundreds of business professionals, I can say with 100percent certainty that 90 percent of individuals do not know with 100 percent clarity what they do well.
The final value is genuine humility which is the ability to never forget who you are, to appreciate the value of every person and to treat everyone respectfully. Humility is an ethical behavior and reinforced by emotional intelligence.
Do you have your own code of ethics or Values Statement? More than 20 years ago I penned my own ethics, values statement and have it on my office wall to this day. Just think for a moment how much better not only the business world would be, but if everyone “got ethics” and more importantly demonstrated those ethical behaviors every day. Yes, just imagine the possibilities.
Leanne Hoagland-Smith is an author, speaker and executive coach. Her weekly column explores issues that impact the bottom line of firms with fewer than 100 employees. She can be reached at 219-508-2859.